Amish buggy crash

FRANK DIFIORE/The Malone Telegram

Emergency workers block off a section of State Route 11B in Dickinson where a car crashed into an Amish buggy, visible between the car and an ambulance, late Thursday afternoon. Three children were ejected from the rig; two suffered injuries.

Amish buggy crash leaves 2 children injured



DICKINSON — Three children were thrown from an Amish buggy after it was struck from behind by a car here, State Police say.

Mattie D. Schlabach, 13, suffered a fractured orbital bone and jaw bone, police said in a press release, while Andy D. Schlabach, 8, had broken vertebrae in his neck.

Lena D. Miller, 7, appeared uninjured, police said.

The horse that had been pulling the rig, said State Police Troop B Public Information Officer Trooper Jennifer Fleishman, "was unfortunately dispatched by troopers on scene."

State Police were called to the site of the crash on State Route 11B at about 3:30 p.m. Thursday.

"An investigation revealed that a 2011 Chevrolet Cruze driven by Matthew J. Gainey, 38, of Rensselaer Falls was traveling westbound on State Route 11B," Fleishman said.

"Gainey passed an uninvolved vehicle while cresting a hill."

The buggy was also headed west, she said, and had just crested the rise when the car hit it.

All three children, who live in North Lawrence, were taken by ambulance to University of Vermont Health Network, Alice Hyde Medical Center in Malone.

Miller was brought there "for evaluation only," police said.

Gainey was not hurt in the crash.

The accident remained under investigation, Fleishman said.

Alice Hyde did not immediately provide condition updates on the three children.


The crash was at least the second involving an Amish buggy on North Country roads in recent months.

On June 13, a child was badly injured when the rig he was riding in was struck by a Ford F-150 pickup truck on Country Route 10 in the Town of Lisbon, St. Lawrence County.

Seven-year-old Levi J. Miller of Lisbon suffered a head injury when he was ejected from the buggy, police said then.

He was taken by ambulance to Canton-Potsdam Hospital in Canton then, in critical condition, transferred to Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse.

By June 17, reported, the child's condition was upgraded to serious.

John D. Miller, 30, was also thrown from the buggy; he was treated then released from the Canton hospital.

Police said then that James J. Crobar, 28, of Heuvelton, had failed to see the buggy ahead of him as he traveled westward on County Route 10.

Later, he was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and unlawful possession of marijuana, both violations, the Watertown Daily Times reported.

Crobar was also handed tickets for third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation, unsafe tires, failure to exercise due care and a seat belt violation.

He was released on an appearance ticket.

The horse hitched to the buggy had been expected to survive, said, but had to be euthanized due to the extent of its injuries.

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Twitter: @editorSuzanne

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